Saturday Snippets…19th September 2020…

Welcome to Saturday Snippets where anything goes…whatever catches my eye or my imagination could be on this post…something for everyone…today it is rather blustery here as we are in the path of hurricane Noul who is wending his way from Vietnam…Looking around the world it seems that there is extreme weather in many other countries as well…hurricanes and fires so wherever you stay safe… xx

As I have decided to step back a bit from blogging maybe I will be tempted to make Saturday Snippets longer it depends as my muse has deserted me…I took a tumble last week..some lovely bruises and September being my birth month and the month where I think of some loved ones I have lost… it always leaves me unsettled…very unsettled…for now whatever your timezone grab a coffee or a glass of wine and enjoy my meanderings!

Music… I learnt Latin at school which also came in handy as a chorister…Yes, I was a choir girl…One of my favourite musical genre’s is Acapella…I could listen to this all day…Indulge me, please…x

I truly do not believe there is a more beautiful sound…than male voices singing Acappella…Sitting on the stairs the acoustics are perfect as are their voices…

Wellness Corner by Sally Cronin…

This week Sally is focusing on fats which also play a massive role in the balance of LDL – Low-density lipoprotein (potentially unhealthy cholesterol) and HDL– High-density lipoprotein (healthy cholesterol). It is a slightly longer post and I know from comments and emails that you are keen to get to the dietary changes that may encourage a healthy cholesterol balance.

Please pop and have a read you will be pleased you have especially if you have cholesterol problems…

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2020/09/18/smorgasbord-health-column-cholesterol-and-fat-myths-part-three-vitamin-k2-and-healthy-fats-by-sally-cronin/

Natural wonders… we saw some when we went to Western Australia…

The Pinnacles are beautiful, but eerie limestone formations within the Nambung National Park which is situated close to the town of Cervantes, Western Australia. How they formed there are stories but thats all they are…

China’s stunning Stone Forest of Shilin is another such phenomenon but scientists have discovered how this forest has formed…

They took a block of candy and this happened…

Through a series of simulations and experiments, they showed how flowing water carves ultra-sharp spikes in landforms.”

While it might take decades or centuries for a real stone forest to blossom, the same trick can be observed in just hours with a suitable analogue, the researchers found. In this case, they used candy. How cool is that?

Superman is still big business and t/shirts are still worn by kids and adults alike…George Reeves was the first actor to portray Superman on TV, appearing in the “Adventures of Superman” 1952-58.

Reeves also appeared in “Gone with the Wind”.

Reeves died in controversial circumstances in 1959 of a gunshot to the head. Reeves death has officially ruled a suicide but alternative theories persisted including a mob hit and the case has featured on such TV programs as ” Unsolved Mysteries”.

It was in Sept 1952 when the  “Adventures of Superman” TV series starring George Reeves premieres in syndication in the US

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Our claim to fame back in 1978 is that my hubby helped build  The lair of Lex Luthor which was supposedly beneath Grand Central Station,  where Otis (Ned Beatty) is tailed to the rail lines beneath, though the hideout itself is an imaginative set built at Pinewood Studios in the UK

This week I have been breadmaking like my life depended on it…I tried a new recipe for a yoghurt cake which Aston devoured quite quickly for a lad who doesn’t eat cake. so quickly I didn’t get time to take a picture…Carrot soup and tomato soup…

Tonight was going to be Thai Duck Curry but now that has changed to duck with a brandy and cream sauce…Beetroot Thoran is also on my to cook list as I want to use some of my curry leaves and Thai green curry which is a favourite in this house…as is a lovely beet soup with crispy spicy chickpeas…

The recipes on my blog I have links for the others will be in my cookbook…Just little spoilers …xx

Climate Change Corner…

Well, you just knew I was going to sneak something in…didn’t you? This school year looks like no other before it, with many students being homeschooled or doing remote learning.

Teaching Young People about Foodprints

Young people are ready to learn that whether it’s a salad, a juicy burger or their morning bowl of cereal, food comes from somewhere and has an impact on the environment, on animals and on people. Our “footprint” is the result of everything it takes to get food from the farm to our plates. But it doesn’t take much to learn a little bit more about where our food comes from and how it got to us or to learn how to choose products and practices that do less harm to the environment, animals and people.

Thank you for reading….

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there will be more on this on my blog this year

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Thank you again for joining me for Whimsical Wednesday I hope you have enjoyed yourselves…If you have please leave a comment as I always enjoy hearing from you it makes my day xxx

 

 

Fruity Fridays…The Coconut…Is it a fruit, a nut or a seed?

 

The Coconut …Is it a fruit?  Welcome to Fruity Fridays where I showcase a different fruit each week.

 

I am sometimes flummoxed by what is a fruit, a nut or a seed or indeed a tree …Take the Papaya tree which grows in abundance here and also I will add grows very quickly …It has fruit with the same name as the tree but it is a PLANT …It has no branches and a soft stem with all the very large leaves at the top and can grow up to 10 metres high.  It is, in fact, a herbaceous plant as the stem bears little wood and stays green and soft until it dies. But ask anyone here and they will call it a Papaya tree…

Which brings me back to the Coconut …Well, it has a hard outer shell-like a nut, doesn’t it?

Don’t you think my Coconut tree looks magnificent?

Botanically it is known as a one-seeded drupe otherwise known as a dry drupe. 

Where does that leave us? With a fruit, a nut and a seed?

The name itself infers it is a nut….after all, a nut can be defined as a one-seeded fruit. But true nuts do not open on maturity and release their seeds… the nut has to decay and then it releases its seeds and is dispersed by an animal either in its faeces or just by being dropped on the ground.

The coconut we buy in the shops or market has no resemblance to the coconut on my tree and until I moved here I thought there was only one type of coconut…

There are so many here coconuts for drinking, eating the soft flesh, hard and hairy like the ones I knew…I am certainly furthering my education by leaps and bounds although I have always been inquisitive…Yeh Yeh…Ok..plain nosey…I like to know things…

coconut

It has 3 layers the first is typically green …This layer is called exocarp then you get the fibrous husk( mesocarp) this surrounds the woody layer ( endocarp) which surrounds the seed…. which is what you get in the supermarkets.

But did you know???

The coconut palm is not a tree as it has no bark, no branches, or secondary growth. It is a woody perennial known as monocotyledons as the trunk is the stem.

The coconut is known as the Tree of Life as every bit of the tree is and can be used for drinks, fibre, food, fuel, musical instruments,  cooking utensils and so much more.

it is also claimed although not formally recorded that during World War 11  and the Vietnam war when intravenous (IV) solution was in short supply, doctors used coconut water as a  substitute for  IV solutions.

If the shell of the coconut has not been cracked, the coconut water inside is usually sterile – that is, free of bacteria and the like. So technically it could be injected safely into people, to replace fluid loss? It might, however, be said it might just be better just to drink it to replace blood plasma.

So do we now know what the coconut is? A fruit, nut or seed?

Mangoes, peaches and almonds are in the same drupe family as the coconut. Although the coconut is a dry drupe and peaches and mango are fleshy drupes.  Well, I clearly am not a botanical expert but in my world but I have always thought of those as fruits so the coconut to me is a cross between a fruit and a nut which we eat the flesh off and drink the lovely juice of a huge seed.

There you have it!

Just in case you missed it…Here is my post on how to make your own coconut oil...   Which would make a lovely present especially…shhhhhh, with Christmas coming…

If you just want to make something for yourself and your family then these macaroons are easy to make and delicious.

Coconut Macaroons.

coconut-macaroons
What to make when you have egg whites leftover from making Carbonara? I have not made coconut macaroons for years. Next time for a little more colour I will lightly toast my coconut and maybe melt some chocolate and drizzle over them.

Ingredients:

  • 4 egg whites
  • 3 cups of desiccated coconut or fresh coconut if you have it.
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence
  • 1/4 tsp of salt

Let’s Cook!
Whisk the egg whites, sugar, vanilla essence and salt until the mix is soft and frothy.
Fold in the coconut and put spoonfuls on a lined baking tray.
Cook in a preheated oven on 350F or 175 C for 15-20 minutes.
Remove from oven and cool on a baking tray.
This recipe made about 12 depending on the size of your spoon.

Enjoy!

Coconut any which way is available here and my early morning drink is often just a glass of fresh coconut juice…be very careful if you are coconut juice from a store though as often it is laden with sugar and not 100% coconut juice.

Coconut cream/milk is also used in curries and desserts…if you love cream but are looking for a great dairy-free option then make your own in a trice…easy to do just follow my recipe…

This lovely cream is a great alternative to fresh cream ….Fresh cream is not readily available here and tends to be treated so this little discovery was and is a godsend even hubby who loves cream liked it …

If you are trying to cut down not only on added sugars but fat and I have seen many recipes for making a non-dairy cream with coconut cream/milk that I thought it was time I tried it as this is the home of coconuts…haha…

Strawberries and non dairy coconut cream

Coconut milk is in the fridge as is the stainless steel pot and the whisk blades…Everything must be cold…It is quick and easy it whipped up in about 2 minutes if that I added nothing and as I said it was very nice even hubby who loves fresh cream and lots of it had to admit it tasted good…I think it is easier here as our coconut milk is 100% no additives at all…I will be making this in future and it is so much healthier. A non-dairy cream which would go with any dessert.

But not everyone thinks coconut oil is good for you… Coconut oil is “pure poison,” says Harvard professor… Good fats come mainly from vegetables, nuts, seeds, and fish. Healthy fats are liquid at room temperature, not solid….. The plot thickens my coconut oil is liquid? Far to warm here to solidify…

I know coconuts are high in saturated fats but…MODERATION… My health has improved since I have incorporated coconut oil etc in my diet although depending on what I am making I may use olive oil or another healthy oil again it is about balance and moderation…

Some research states that the saturated fat from the coconut may, react differently to other saturated fats in our bodies…..Why? Because most of the saturated fats in coconut are medium-chain fatty acids whose properties metabolism are different from those of animal origin. Medium-chain fatty acids do not undergo degradation and re-esterification processes and are directly used in the body to produce energy. They are not as ‘bad for health’ as other saturated fats. 

Personally, I love coconut and I love how it is utilised here not only for food but for wrapping goods or food whilst steaming…it is environmentally friendly and that suits me…

That’s all for today…I hope you have enjoyed learning about the versatile coconut …

About Carol Taylor: 

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a fabulous week and stay safe these are troubling times xx

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Food Column – Carol Taylor – A – Z of Food ‘R’ for Rice, Ras el Hanout, Rhubarb, Ricotta Cheese and Rice Noodles

The letter R…Rice and noodles(rice) staples here and in many other parts of the world…also lots of other interesting titbits all beginning with R…Thank you, Sally, for running this series…I hope you all enjoy…Please leave your comments we love to hear from you Hugs xx

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

The Culinary Alphabet, The Letter R.

Welcome to this months edition of the Culinary Alphabet, where I am bringing you ingredients and cooking terms beginning with the letter R

Starting with my favorite carb which is?    Rice

There are several grains called rice, which have been cultivated for thousands of years. Asian rice (Oryza sativa) is most widely known and most widely grown, with two major subspecies and over 40,000 varieties. When I first came to Thailand that is when I realized just how many different rices that there were and also colors. The main kinds of rice I cook with are Jasmine Rice, Brown Rice, Black Rice and sticky rice ( glutinous rice)…Thailand is also one of the major exporters of rice and it is the staple food for many here even the dogs eat rice…Mine will not touch dog biscuits or tinned food and many dogs here are…

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Climate Change and Health …my last post…

This year we have seen wildfires in Australia, USA, parts of the Arctic, the Amazon and central Asia have also experienced unusually severe blazes.

Image by Monika Schröder from Pixabay

We are being encouraged to use electric cars, buy local to cut our carbon footprint, practise circular recycling, cook from scratch and use nose to tail eating to cut waste…Tesco in the UK is championing cutting waste…the list goes on…Frankly, I am doing my best and I am still confronted with stark headlines…telling me to do more!

On top of this, we haveCovid-19, the deaths, the effect on the economies of the world which no doubt will hit us in our pockets at some point, when will it stop?…

Image by Klaus Hausmann from Pixabay

I am currently reading Salt, Sugar and Fat and I am astounded at the amount of money being spent by big corporations on research and advertising all aimed at selling their products …it is a vast machine which monitors our shopping habits, which uses scans to see how our brains light up to certain products so that they can get the science right and produce a product which when it hits our taste buds and the info travels to our brains it hits what they call our bliss point so we eat more…we get addicted…our children get addicted…obesity figures grow year on year, the teeth of the nation suffer more decay, diabetes type 2 is on the increase…allergies are on the rise, health conditions which can be directly contributed to the number of chemicals we consume are on the rise and wouldn’t exist more than likely if it wasn’t for the world’s consumption of too much sugar, fat and salt by eating processed foods.

Climate Change…like you and you and you… I do my very best…However, it isn’t just down to me or you…New research shows that around a fifth of all carbon emissions in recent years has come from the assets and suppliers of multinational corporations – and the flow of money indicates that pollution is effectively being outsourced from the developed to the developing world.

Getting this information on record could help to spur more radical climate action from private business, the researchers say – and stop the trend for outsourcing emissions. We all live on the same planet, after all.

Sources:

https://www.sciencealert.com/one-fifth-of-all-carbon-emissions-can-be-traced-back-to-multinational-companies

https://unctad.org/en/Pages/DIAE/FDI%20Statistics/FDI-Statistics-Bilateral.aspx

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41558-020-0895-9

Between reading sugar, Salt and Fat and the fact that emissions are being outsourced and not attributed to the country of origin and also not being recorded for us to see…Yes us as it affects us all and we can keep doing what we are doing and to what aim? When we are being assaulted, monitored and targeted from all sides by huge multinational corporations…and not forgetting the block editor…x

That’s all from me…I will be concentrating on my writing and my recipes…cooking which I love and of course Saturday Snippets…xxx

About Carol Taylor: 

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a fabulous week and stay safe these are troubling times xx

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine- Weekly Round Up – September 6th – 12th 2020 – Classic WordPress editor – Music, Books, Reviews, Health, Stories and Funnies

As always a great and varied week with something for everyone…there is also a mention of you know what…that which most of us would quietly Love it to fade away…Enjoy!

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed on Smorgasbord this week.

I hope all of you are well despite the increase of infections in many of our countries. With two more countries in Europe being removed from the air bridge scheme it is becoming a gamble taking that long awaited holiday.

This week we should have been basking in the sunshine by the pool of our selected villa in Malta. Back in June we decided to lose our deposit and cancel the trip, thankfully no flights booked, as my two older sisters were not keen on the travel aspect and even then there was the threat of 14 day quarantine there and also back in Ireland and the UK.

As it turns out, whilst in June there were relatively few cases in Malta, with the arrival of their summer visitors this is not the case now.

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CarolCooks2…weekly roundup 6th September -12th September 2020… Recipes, Health, Whimsy, Organic Farming and jamming…

Welcome to this week’s edition of my weekly roundup of posts…Especially for you just in case you missed any posts during the week…So whatever your time zone grab a coffee or a glass of wine…Take a pew, get comfy… have a read… I hope you enjoy it!

 

Relax and Enjoy! (1) Weekly Roundup

Monday always starts with news and my views… always something new to discover…This week was no different…I discussed how Covid-19 has changed our eating habits…

COVID-19 …although devastating to many has meant that many have also discovered the joy of eating food and sharing it with their loved ones…Family time has come to the fore and people are eating together again…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/07/how-covid-19-has-changed-our-eating-and-buying-habits/

Tuesday Topics…Breakfast Oats…

Oats … a popular breakfast dish which is easy to make or can be made and left overnight ready for the morning…When my kiddies were little I used to pop the oats in the slow cooker overnight…hubby was first up and out to work so he had his and as the kids appeared it was nice and hot and ready for them…no burnt saucepans just beautiful porridge oats…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/08/tuesdays-topic-breakfast-oats/

The Culinary Alphabet with a twist…The letter E (agrafE)

The letter E was a doozy…

Did you know?

There are 95069 words that end with E…of course, not all food-related but there are quite a few so I have not gone for the obvious many of your favourites will not be here …Brownie being one but never fear chocolate is still featured…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/09/the-culinary-alphabet-with-a-twist-the-letter-e-agrafe/

National Organic Month…what is organic and what foods are classed as organic and how are they certified?…

Organic farming first began as an alternative method of farming, a healthier way of farming without growing produce using man-made pesticides and fertilisers or contain and use genetically modified organisms (GMO’s)…There are still these small farmers who have no official certification but they follow to the T organic procedures and also take a whole farm approach and practise long term sustainability thus protecting the environment.

That statement made a few of my regular readers smile as like me they had grandparents who practised farming and grew foods without using pesticides …farming then went through changes where like smoking it was seen as a way to get rid of unwanted pests or in the case of smoking it was fashionable…hindsight is wonderful, isn’t it?

Today too many it is a new way of farming…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/10/national-organic-month-what-is-organic-andwhatfoods-are-classed-as-organic-and-how-is-it-certified/

Fruity Friday’s… The chilli and yes it is a fruit!

Chilli plant- hot- spicy- Thai chillies

Chillies are in season all year round here…although a pepper’s hotness is generally determined by genetics, the environment can play a role. Long hot days cause peppers to produce more capsaicin, the specific alkaloid that delivers the spicy kick…The chillies I am picking at the moment have certainly racked the heat up a bit..they are spicy hot babies…

This wonderful versatile fruit which some love to hate… Are the fruits from the flowers of the Nightshade family. Mainly eaten as a vegetable but most definitely it is a fruit.

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/11/fruity-fridays-the-chilli-and-yes-it-is-a-fruit-2/

Saturday Snippets…12th September 2020…

Welcome to Saturday Snippets were anything goes…whatever catches my eye or my imagination could be on this post…something for everyone…I hope so…so whatever your timezone grab a coffee or a glass of wine and enjoy!

This week there was music and art, the real million dollar quartet, health from Sally and more…

https://carolcooks2.com/2020/09/12/saturday-snippets-12th-september-2020/

That’s all for this weeks roundup I do hope you have enjoyed it and I look forward to your comments xx

God bless you all in these turbulent times…especially those of my readers who are affected or in the path of these wildfires in California…Please stay safe…x

When this is all over my hope for the future is a cleaner world… I do want to see communities, and caring for your neighbour becoming the new norm…WORKING TOGETHER INSTEAD OF WORKING AGAINST EACH OTHER…Being kind to each other…Loving someone whatever their religion or skin colour…Can we make this happen? We have to but in the right way…Are we willing to make a stand? Personally, I would love to see lessons learnt ..realistically I have my doubts…

Thank you for reading be well and stay safe xxx

About Carol Taylor: Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and well being.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…Then, I will be happy!

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all stay safe and healthy xx